The land of Vrania is cold and harsh, a vicious place to live. But the decedents of Vranr have made their home there for hundreds of years, their passage westward blocked by the treacherous Black Isles and the raging sea. But Vrania is beginning to grow crowded, and food is harder to find than ever before. Exiled from their village to make their own way, Karik and his friends head north, hoping to find shelter from the coming winter, and a place where they can found a new village. But the north is dangerous, even for Vrania, and when Karik meets the huntress Ylmi, they take the first steps in a journey that will shape their world for generations to come.